How is clinical Depression diagnosed in Teenagers?

Do you ever notice the mood swings your child goes through? Did his behavior seem unusual than normal like irritation, annoyance, isolating himself? Well, the chances are that he might be in quick need of a psychologist who can treat him as soon as possible. 

Such depressive orders are also known as clinical depression disorders. They directly attack the functioning of your brain. 

Apart from this we also have another depressive disorder known as manic depression that can take place in any of the forms below -

  • Bipolar I
  • Bipolar II
  • Cyclothymic Disorder
  • Bipolar Disorder (Unspecified)

One of the Mind-blowing Facts - about Clinical Depression is that 'More than 17.4 million teenagers or 1 out of every 7th adolescent develops the symptoms of the Bipolar Disorder/Clinical Depression every year in the US.'

What are the different medical names of Bipolar depression?

  • Bipolar mood disorder
  • Bipolar affective disorder
  • Manic depression
  • Manic-depressive illness
  • Manic-depressive disorder

What are the symptoms of clinical depression? 

The patients with clinical depression show the multiple symptoms mentioned below. This is how the guardians, caretakers, or the parents at home can easily diagnose the symptoms of clinical depression in teenagers. They must have at least 2 or more symptoms in continuity for 2 weeks to be diagnosed further for clinical depression -

  • Underestimating oneself
  • Feeling of worthlessness
  • Harming oneself after facing small failures
  • Lack of energy or enthusiasm
  • Physical restlessness 
  • Threatening family of leaving home after small fights
  • Lack of stamina
  • Excess headache, vomiting, face acne, fatigue, or stomach/full-body ache
  • Always blaming oneself
  • Feeling lost and guilty of his actions
  • Insomnia - trouble sleeping
  • Disturbed eating schedule
  • Lacking interest in doing things which you loved doing once upon a time
  • Excess aggression, being abusive, and crying suddenly
  • Feeling lack of confidence in his/her physical appearance
  • Wanted to isolate from the world
  • Hard to sustain relationships for long

Why Depression is an alarming topic according to

According to, the suicide rates globally due to clinical depression have heightened in the last 2 years especially in adolescents and teenagers. The facts below are enough to justify their statement -

  • Before touching the adulthood phase of life, almost 20% of the teens undergo the depression phase.
  • Almost 50%, the female teenagers are at risk of developing depression in comparison to male teenagers. 
  • More than 15% of teenagers face at least 1 symptom of depression before becoming adults as reported and diagnosed.
  • As per data, the number of teens that get treated for depression is approximately 30%. 
  • 90% of the teens with a toxic home culture filled with negligence and abuse are at a higher risk of depression.
  • Children who underwent traumatic events in their life like parents getting divorced or the death of a family member are 70% more at the risk of facing depression.
  • After every 120 minutes, teenagers either plans to suicide, commits suicide, or on a verge of dying.
  • As per data, suicide has been the third biggest cause of death among people falling between the age group of 15 to 24 years.

Depression Treatment Facts -

According to everyday, the following facts are true in the case of clinical treatment -

  • Almost 2 out of 3 teenagers suffering from depression do not want to take any external help despite the successful depression treatment. 
  • Within 4 to 6 weeks of time frame, almost 80% of the teenagers having depression positively start responding to the clinical treatment.
  • The minority of teenagers fails to respond to the treatment because they interrupted & halted the treatment in between. 

How is clinical depression diagnosed in Teenagers?

With the right education in such subjects and awareness, anybody can know the symptoms that whether a particular teen is in a need of a clinical depression treatment or not. 

Diagnosing it nowadays has become much obvious than before. Just observe the teen's actions and behaviors and you will get to know! This is how the teen is diagnosed with clinical depression by the psychologists -

  • The teen in the initials stage undergoes the complete mental health checkup.
  • A session is taken with parents to know their teen's behavior at home like his sleeping schedule, his daily activities, level of energy, etc.
  • The health care provider will also find out from the family side if anybody in their family line ever had faced depression. 
  • It does not involve body scanning or blood test in the diagnosing process of clinical depression. Rather some tests might be done from the heath workers' side to understand more about the depressed teenager.
  • A session is taken with the school/college teachers to know his academic performance and his behavior towards other classmates.
  • A session may also be taken with the other classes he attends like guitar classes, dance classes, volleyball classes, etc to diagnose the symptoms of clinical depression. 
  • Filling survey forms, and multiple activities are being done with the teenager to understand his mindset broadly. 
  • A psychologist will work on gathering the knowledge on the depressed teenager's history, his past, childhood experience, traumatic events, his present experience, his thoughts on making his future, etc to diagnose the condition better.

Many times the symptoms of clinical depression can be confused with Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, Posttraumatic stress disorder, Schizophrenia, and various depression-related disorders. This is why the psychologist needs to be qualified enough to diagnose clinical depression by doing the proper research about the depressed teenager's history. 

Does depression help Teenagers in recovering completing?

Now the question arises that whether diagnosing & treating clinical depression help Teenagers in recovering completing?

According to the researchers, there is no final cure for depression. 

Almost 30-35% of teenagers have the recurrence rate of facing depression again in their lifetime. But yeah, diagnosing it on time and treating it can surely -

  • Minimize the symptoms by 80-99% in the teenager
  • Help him stay happy
  • Reduces the suicidal thoughts by giving him the purpose of living in life
  • Improved the overall mental health
  • Creates the sense of worth in him
  • Motivates him to do better
  • Bring him back to his healthy lifestyle 
  • Develops confidence in him

Although, there isn't any clear picture yet of not getting the depression further again in life. Once, you stop the treatment, somewhere down the line, let's say, 1 year or so, if any traumatic incident happens, it might again trigger the mental health of the previously treated teenager and all of the symptoms might come up showing again in him. Henceforth, having the proper focus on the treatment till the end and inculcating the learning from the treatment might reduce the chance of its recurrence.

There is nothing wrong if you are suffering from clinical depression - Stop perceiving it as something that can't be treated or as a matter of shame! We all go through tough times in our lives, which leads us to a major depression leaving us feeling scared of whom shall we communicate our inner worries! Support your loved ones to be more vocal about the depression and encourage them to get it checked by the psychologists as soon as you find the symptoms of major depression on them. 

Let's support, love, and comfort each other - to stop suicidal cases from happening because of clinical depression! 


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